U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.) who could be facing her toughest challenge yet in her bid to retain her seat in next year’s election, just got a big boost from the top House Democrat.
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) issued a statement endorsing the controversial congresswoman who is on a list of far-left anti-Israel lawmakers targeted by a powerful Jewish lobby seeking to oust her along with fellow “Squad” members by backing more moderate candidates.
“Rep. Omar has been elected by her constituents three times and has consistently stood up for them, including through her service on the House Budget Committee,” Jeffries said in a Wednesday statement, according to Politico. “As House Democratic Leader, I vigorously endorse her re-election and stand with her as we battle Extreme MAGA Republicans for the future of our nation.”
The Somali-born Omar has been a vocal and frequent critic of Israel, often making comments that many contend cross the line into overt antisemitism, and was among progressive Dems who snubbed the Jewish state’s president when he delivered an address to a joint session of Congress last month, declaring that there was “no way in hell” that she would attend.
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Just before the visit by Israeli President Isaac Herzog, Omar’s colleague, Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.) who heads up the House Progressive Caucus trashed Israel as a “racist state” during a speech at a left-wing political conference, drawing bipartisan outrage from her fellow lawmakers.
Jayapal, along with Omar and other “Squad” members have repeatedly trashed Israel as an apartheid state as well as tossed around assorted other antisemitic tropes and such flagrant contempt for America’s key ally in the Middle East has led to the powerful American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) looking to invest in cleansing Congress of the Jew-haters.
Earlier this month, Jewish Insider reported that AIPAC “has stepped up its recruitment efforts to challenge Democratic incumbents who have clashed with the pro-Israel establishment,”
The outlet cited “multiple sources familiar with AIPAC’s outreach” in its reporting that “The bipartisan pro-Israel group has been actively courting a slate of House candidates to oppose marquee members of the ‘Squad,’ including Reps. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) and Ilhan Omar (D-MN).”
“We proudly support progressive candidates who will advance the US-Israel relationship and oppose anti-Israel candidates,” AIPAC spokesperson Marshall Wittmann said in a statement, according to Politico. “We have supported the House Democratic leadership, almost half of the Congressional Progressive Caucus and over half of the Congressional Black Caucus and Hispanic Caucus.”
“In addition to Jeffries, Omar is picking up support from House Minority Whip Katherine Clark (D-Mass.), Caucus Chair Pete Aguilar (D-Calif.) and the previous top trio of House Democratic leadership: Reps. Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and Jim Clyburn (D-S.C.). A spokesperson for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee also confirmed the plan to back incumbents,” Politico reported.
In a statement, Omar said that she was “proud to have earned the respect and support of every single member of the Democratic House leadership for my re-election campaign.”
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